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India is a beautiful country with its diversity in languages, dressing styles, numerous traditions, cuisines, religions and culture. Having varied religions, India is home to several castes and sub-castes.

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So what is caste?
Caste is a form of social division pervaded in India since early centuries in which people are divided into four main classes namely Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaisya and Shudra.

Now you might be wondering, who created the caste.
It is believed that in India, castes were originated in ancient time, been shaped by the ruling elites i.e; Mughal Empire and British rule. In those times, Indians were segregated by caste and were granted administrative jobs or senior roles to only upper castes. This led to social tension due to imbalance in job roles, bringing reservation into picture in which a certain percentage of government jobs were reserved for people belonging to lower castes. Gradually caste divided Indians into many small sub-groups and communities, each following their own rules and code of conduct.

Casteism can be stated as people belonging to certain community are either discriminated against or shown favour, just on the basis of caste regardless of their work and knowledge.

Problems we are bearing due to Casteism:
1. Although, India is a Patriotic Country but this evil in society has come in the way of unity and integrity of our nation. People stand in unity in their own castes rather being together as Indians.

2. In India, marriages are practised within one’s own caste which is also called as Endogamy. Marrying in same caste, develops a deep sense of possessiveness for own caste leading to growth in casteism.

3. Casteism has encouraged corruption. People try to help the people belonging to same caste in all way, and so the fair play gets ignored.

4. Casteism is a big problem in technological advancement. Due to reservations in government and private services, there is an increase in number of less competent people in challenging work environment leading to national loss in technological growth.

5. The worst consequence of casteism is introduction to untouchability. It is quite inhuman behaviour to exploit the lower caste who has same body functionalities ike anyone else. The indian society terms this distinction as bad Karma of past birth leading to disgraceful life in present birth. The crowd belonging to lower caste go through several social injustice. Even their children are restrained from educational facilities given to upper caste children. In turn, the secluded community get more united and strengthen in themselves to protect their interests leading to major casteism and sometimes riots.

Is Casteism a social taboo?
This question is inevitable while you are living in Indian society. In our childhood days, our parents used to look for friends for us who belong to same caste. By doing this, parents used to feel secure for their children as they are getting along in their own right community / caste. As we grew big and got into jobs, we came across similiar facet of casteism as promotion was easy for those who belong to same community. Similarly, when we look for houses and apartments, we tend to search for areas where own community people stay.
In short, Casteism is a slow poison leading to groupism in society. It is a deep rooted concept which is inescapable leading to division of our society into numerous religions and castes giving a sense of unity within one’s own caste than within Nation.

How can we eradicate this social evil:
• Education: Education plays a vital role in eradicating the caste system. It can change the individual thinking and thus unite us. If school text books include lessons to teach children that casteism is manmade and was divised by our forefathers for the division of labor, problem of casteism can be minimised.

• Inter caste marriage: It can help in changing the mindset of young generations, considering overall people of the country as their own.

• Economic Stability : Government should look after the development and progress for all sections of people in the nation. No special policy should be passed for only some sections of society. Infact treating country as one by the government can only unite the nation effectively.

Caste System has now become a chronic and social evil widespread. It has gained its place deep into our hearts and mind, thus cannot be uprooted overnight. But for a better standard of living for oneself and country’s development, we need to have fair play, universal equality and brotherhood. We should stress on similarities than differences between different castes for a healthy and happy living.

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